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Sodium butyrate in poultry: the importance of proper protection

Mathieu Cortyl, Norel Animal Nutrition Singapore
There is more and more evidence that butyric acid possesses interesting characteristics that make it "not just an acid". In addition the well documented anti bacterial effect, sodium butyrate is known to stimulate the production of pancreatic secretions, including enzymes. It will also stimulate hormones, such as insulin, which in turn stimulates epithelium development.
Sodium butyrate also improves the absorption of electrolytes and reduces the incidence of diarrhoea, providing the ileal and the hindgut mucosa with a preferred energy source. Recently, more and more data suggests positive impacts on the immune defence of the animal. However, not all butyrates are equal. Using a specific production process to protect sodium butyrate, it is possible to ensure a gradual release along the digestive tract. This will maximize the efficacy of this important additive.

The use of acids in poultry nutrition is quite well accepted. Besides the reduction of pH that limits the development of pathogens and helps in the digestion of proteins at crop level, some acids also have the ability to enter the gram-negative bacteria and disrupt their metabolism.

The importance of proper protection
Aware of the limitations of the first and second generations of butyrates, the R&D department of NOREL Animal Nutrition has continued its investigations with the aim of producing a more concentrated, though still protected, product to add to its range of slow-release, natural growth promoters. This has led to the development of GUSTOR BP-70, using a specific fat coating to protect the active ingredients.
This allows the sodium butyrate to reach the distal sections of the GI tract, not only acting as a natural growth promoter but also reducing the levels of pathogenic bacteria, especially Salmonella. This was demonstrated during a trial conducted at the University of Leon, Spain and published in Poultry Science by Fernández-Rubio et al. (2009).

The objective of the experiment was to evaluate the effect of GUSTOR BP-70 (in comparison with a first generation product) as a preventing tool against Salmonella enteritidis infection at intestinal and systemic phases.



The results confirm that sodium butyrate partially protected with vegetable fats (GUSTOR BP-70) offers a unique balance of free and protected active substances, effective all along the gastrointestinal tract because it is slowly released during digestion. Furthermore, this third generation sodium butyrate allows having a higher level of active substances (70% of sodium butyrate) when compared to the coated products, requiring a lower dose per kg of feed to achieve the same level of butyrate. GUSTOR BP-70 has a positive effect on the development of the intestinal villi and helps in controlling the gut pathogens such as Salmonella.

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Article made possible through the contribution of Mathieu Cortyl and Norel Animal Nutrition Singapore.

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